The Movie Waffler TV Waffle - ASH VS EVIL DEAD Season 1, Episode 4: Brujo | The Movie Waffler

TV Waffle - ASH VS EVIL DEAD Season 1, Episode 4: Brujo

Ash embarks on a hallucinogenic quest for answers.

Review by Eric Hillis (@hilliseric)

After the thunderous opening salvo of the first three episodes, Ash Vs Evil Dead had its first dud of an episode with this week's 'Brujo'. Gory action and witty interactions took an Oldsmobile back seat for an episode that chiefly consisted of an extended drug trip sequence, as Ash (Bruce Campbell) knocked back a powerful concoction brewed up by Brujo (Hemky Madera), Pablo's (Ray Santiago) witch doctor uncle.
Now I don't know about you, but I can't abide drug trip sequences on screen; they bore the pants off me. Like underwater scenes in James Bond movies or those numbing set-pieces in sci-fi movies where an astronaut has to venture through the airlock to repair a damaged hull, I just want to get through them as quickly as possible, so this episode was a major drag. Aside from an amusing montage of fragments of Ash's life - a series of white trash staples like wrestling, porn and the various Michigan branches of Value Stop Ash has eked out a living at - this was a rehash of the usual druggy cliches, including a talking lizard! Ash also stumbled across the demon summoned up in last week's episode, or so he believed, mistakenly attacking Kelly, who appeared to have some possession issues of her own.
The most interesting scenes of this episode for once didn't feature Ash, but rather Ruby, the mysterious deadite slayer played by Lucy Lawless. She arrived just in time to save a handcuffed Amanda (Jill Marie Jones) from becoming a deadite snack, and revealed some details about her background. Or did she? Ruby claimed to be the daughter of Evil Dead 2's Professor Knowby and his wife Henrietta, and the sister of their daughter Annie, telling Amanda she's seeking revenge on Ash, whom she holds responsible for their deaths. However, when the deadite piped up that he knew her identity, Ruby quickly silenced him with a swift decapitation, leading us to question if she's really telling the truth. She does however appear to have in her possession Ash's severed hand, which has recently begun to reanimate.
The direction here is the most blandly televisual we've seen so far in this series, and it's the first episode helmed by a director from a purely TV background - David Frazee, who will return for next week's episode, 'The Host'. As with previous episodes, 'Brujo' was penned by a writer from a comedy background - James E Eagan, who boasts 39 episodes of Saturday Night Live on his CV - but this one failed to raise a single chortle from me, a big disappointment after the witty opening three episodes. Let's hope Ash can wake up from this trip and get back to his usual hilarious self next week.

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